11 high ranking security officials and 50 police officers have been arrested in Iraq on suspected involvement in last Sunday’s devastating double bombings in Baghdad. Those arrested include guards at the 15 checkpoints the bombers had to pass to gain entrance to the high security zone where the bombings took place, Reuters.
U.S. President Barack Obama met the returning coffins of 18 service members killed this week in Afghanistan at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware last night, Times Online.
Manfred Nowak, the U.N.’s special envoy for torture investigation, was denied entrance into Zimbabwe yesterday despite an invitation from Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. Control of the country is currently shared by Prime Minister Tsvangirai and President Robert Mugabe. Nowak was going to Zimbabwe to investigate reports that President Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party has begun to use violence against members of Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s MDC (Movement for Democratic Change) party, BBC News.
The yacht belonging to Paul and Rachel Chandler, a British couple on a sailing holiday in the Indian Ocean, has been found. The couple sent out a distress signal before they were picked up by pirates and are now being held on a boat off the coast of Somalia, AFP. Q & A on Somali Piracy, BBC News. The Prime Minister of Somalia met with relatives of the captive couple in Britian, ITN. Transcript of Paul Chandler’s call to ITV news, Telegraph.
Ri Gun, a North Korean diplomat, will be allowed to visit the United States later this month where he will discuss the country’s nuclear program, BBC News.
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai of Zimbabwe has announced that he and his party will boycott cabinet meetings and not work with President Robert Mugabe’s party. Mugabe is a very controversial figure and has been condemned internationally for his policies. Tsvangirai says the catalyst for this move was the jailing of Roy Bennett, his deputy agriculture minister-designate, New York Times.
Talks in Honduras remain deadlocked as de facto leader Roberto Micheletti resists reinstating President Manuel Zelaya, the man ousted during a military coup in June. Zelaya says he will give the interim government two days to reach an agreement, Reuters.
Hot Topic: In Mexican Drug War, Investigators Are Fearful.
If you haven’t, check out our earlier live blog of today’s protests in Tehran after Ahmadinejad was declared the winner of the presidential election. Some unverified reports say 50-100 people died in clashes, but BNO can only confirm three deaths so far, BNO.
President Obama met with Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai today and pledged to give $73m in aid to the struggling country. Tsvangirai shares power with President Robert Mugabe, who is widely criticized by international powers, BBC News.
The launch of the space shuttle Endeavour has been delayed because of a hydrogen gas leak. A second launch attempt will take at least four days, SPACE.
Hot Topic: NPR takes a look at military families who will have to have to celebrate Father’s Day without their dads. Read it here.
Laos officials announced today that a British woman accused of drug smuggling in the Asian country won’t face the death penalty because she is pregnant. 20-year-old Samantha Orobator, arrested last August, has been charged with carrying a pound of heroin, which usually results in death by firing squad, but it is illegal to sentence pregnant women to death in Laos. Orrobator became pregnant while imprisoned, with some reports claiming she had also been two months pregnant when arrested, but miscarried in prison, CNN.
Jestina Mukoko, a Zimbabwe human rights activist, has been sent back to jail after planning to overthrow President Robert Mugabe from power. 17 others have also been ordered back, and some say they gave false confessions after being tortured, BBC News.
The American Tony award nominations have been announced with Elton John’s musical Billy Elliot receiving 15, the most of any show. God of Carnage‘s four leads – James Gandolfini, Hope Davis, Marcia Gay Harden and Jeff Daniels – all received nominations, NY Times.
Georgia says a brief mutiny has been settled at a military base near Tbilisi. The government had initially blamed the mutiny on Russia, but has since recanted and said the aim was to disrupt NATO exercises, Wa Po.
A Winnipeg homeless man jumped into a river to save a teen who had fallen off the Provencher Bridge on Sunday. Farron Hall jumped into cold water to save the boy and made his way against the current back to the riverbank with the teen. Hall has been released from the hospital, but the boy’s condition is not known. Hall has been hailed a hero by the town, CBC.
Six gay men have been killed by members of their tribe in Iraq. The shootings occurred in two separate incidents, with that latest being on Thursday. There are reports that a restaurant was also set on fire, CNN.
The two-year-old grandson of Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai drowned in a pool, just one month after Tsvangirai’s wife was killed in a car crash. The Prime Minister is a primary opponent of President Robert Mugabe, who is accused of imperialism, among other charges, and is widely criticized by international political bodies. PM Tsvangirai has been arrested many times and tortured by police, has been the target of a credible assassination plot, and won a presidential election in the country last year, which Mugabe insisted he won and retained the seat, Sky News.
President Obama in a visit to the country has said he backs Turkey’s request to be part of the European Union. Obama believes this would signal to Muslims that they were welcome, saying “The United States and Europe must approach Muslims as our friends, neighbors and partners in fighting injustice, intolerance and violence, forging a relationship based on mutual respect and mutual interest.” Obama will be in Turkey for the next two days, BBC News.
And the #1 World News Story: No Accord at UN Talks on North Korea.